Back in December, I interviewed junior middleweight prospect, Robert RJ Sockwell. He was seeking a manager and another fight. Fast forward to March of this year, he now has a manager and had a fight early in the month. He scored a first round stoppage of Ramiro Bueno Jr.. I got in touch with RJ aka “Black Gold” just over a week after his fight to see what he was up to.
BOXING 4 FREE: On March 8th, you fought and defeated Ramiro Bueno Jr. with ease. I thought he had an awkward style. That could be from a number of factors. Awkward fighters can be dangerous, because they’re unpredictable. Was that a concern for you?
RJ: I agree with you about his style being awkward but no it wasn’t a concern. I’ve had a lot of amateur experience so adapting to the awkwardness of another fighter’s style has been learned sometime ago. Another contributing factor to the adjustment was my last 2 weeks of sparring leading up to the fight. The sparring was with fighters identical to his style so the adjustment was fairly easy. But him punching from his waist showed his skill level which is why I got him out of there sooner than later. My only concern from his awkward style was a possibility of a head butt.
Though you handled Bueno Jr. rather easily, was there anything that you and trainer Sean Diggs felt could be improved?
Yea most definitely. It may sound funny but I wasn’t pleased with my performance at all. I’m a perfectionist so I saw many things that needed improvement. I threw 4 jabs I think and let him walk in on me too freely without making him respect my hand skills & that’s one of the 1st things you guys will see in the next fight. I’ll have adjusted by then, because with a better fighter I can’t make the same mistake. I could have gotten him out of there much sooner but I myself wanted to see what he brought to the table and wanted to work a little bit, but it happen how it happen. It’s been 6 months since the last fight so there were traces of ring rust.
Your last fight was barely over before you called out another local fighter, Stephon Burgette. Were you serious and is there a real possibility of that fight happening?
I was definitely serious about calling out Burgette. I think it would make for a good money fight for two hometown guys. He’s scared and doesn’t wanna fight. My team said I was being a bully because the people already knew who would win so it wouldn’t be a good decision for them. I’m far from a bully. I give advice to junior high and high school students against bullying so that kind of upset me so I left it alone. It just made good business sense and a good fight for the area. We both bring good sized crowds and it would speed up the process of bringing boxing back to the area. So to answer the possibility of him and I fighting, no, it isn’t realistic. So it’s on to the next, as I said in my Facebook post, I just like to answer the people’s question of who the King of Scranton is.
You were back in the gym the Monday after the fight. No rest & relaxation?
Absolutely. I’ve looked up to and admired Floyd Mayweather Jr. for many years. He’s been notorious for doing the same, not to mention, I can’t recall being hit clean in the fight or hurting my hands so I didn’t see the point of not being in the gym. On top of that my mind & body has and still is in fight mode. I’ve been busting my butt for nine weeks for that last fight. So the work never stops. And yea I’m fresh off vacation & ready to get back in the gym now. I’ll rest when I retire from the sport.
Do you have any fights lined up?
I’m scheduled for a fight back at home on June 21st venue unknown yet. We’re looking for something before that and as you know, I’m a gym rat so I’ll be ready to go. I’m dying to get back in the ring. *UPDATE: RJ will be fighting on June 20th at the Hilton in Scranton, PA.
Back in December, you told BOXING 4 FREE that you would seeking a manager. Did you ever find one?
I’ve found what I was looking for in terms of management. Thanks for putting it out there that I was in need of help. I believe in my team and believe they’ll get me where I need to be to strap multiple world titles around my waist.
One last thing, is there anything you like to say to the visitors of BOXING 4 FREE, your family, friends, and fans?
I wanna thank everyone for coming. All of my supporters. I hope I gained some new fans. All my family who made their long trips from all over, purchasing tickets, t-shirts, booking hotel rooms & for keeping me focused. We showed we can come out in big numbers and still remain classy & not have any problems. People can still get their “Black Gold”, “Love, Loyalty & Support” t-shirts by contacting me via FB, twitter.com/rjsockwell or Instagram.com/rjblackgoldsockwell.